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Research Papers

A Semantic Information Model for Capturing and Communicating Design Decisions

[+] Author and Article Information
Justin A. Rockwell

Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Amherst, MA 01003jrockwel@engin.umass.edu

Ian R. Grosse1

Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Amherst, MA 01003grosse@ecs.umass.edu

Sundar Krishnamurty

Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Amherst, MA 01003skrishna@ecs.umass.edu

Jack C. Wileden

Department of Computer Science, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Amherst, MA 01003jack@cs.umass.edu

http://edesign.ecs.umass.edu

Sensata Technologies is a producer of sensors and controls for manufacturers in the automotive, appliance, aircraft, industrial, and HVAC markets, Attleboro, MA.

ttp://edesign.ecs.umass.edu

1

Corresponding author.

J. Comput. Inf. Sci. Eng 10(3), 031008 (Sep 03, 2010) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3462926 History: Received July 31, 2009; Revised February 19, 2010; Published September 03, 2010; Online September 03, 2010

A semantic information model to improve reuse and communication of engineering design knowledge is presented in this paper. We consider design to be a process involving a sequence of decisions informed by the current state of information. As such, the information model developed is structured to reflect the conceptualizations of engineering design decisions with a particular emphasis on semantically capturing design rationale. Through the approach presented, knowledge reuse is achieved by communicating design rationale. A case study is presented to illustrate two key features of the approach: (1) seamless integration of separate modular domain ontologies and instance knowledge related to engineering design that are needed to support decision making and (2) the explicit documentation of design rationale through design decisions.

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Copyright © 2010 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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References

Figures

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Figure 1

Conceptual overview of the decision support ontology (augmented from Ref. 8)

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Figure 2

Information model of AHP

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Figure 3

Existing and redesign alternatives (in half symmetry) of transfer plate

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Figure 4

Decision documentation from DSO

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Figure 5

Evaluation documentation from DSO (accessible through from the decision instance)

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Figure 6

Analysis model from design artifact history layer (accessible from the evaluation documentation)

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Figure 7

Documentation of decision from AHP-DMO (accessible through the has evaluation method property from the evaluation documentation)

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Figure 8

Documentation of an evaluation for pairwise comparison

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